How To Install Timing Chain in 4.0 Ford Explorer? (Explained)

If you are a vehicle owner or an automotive enthusiast, chances are, at some point, you will need to replace the timing chain in your vehicle. 

Timing chains will have 80,000 miles or more on them and should be replaced before the failure occurs.

A worn timing chain is a sign that your engine could have problems in the near future if it is not replaced in time. 

These chains are hidden from sight and don’t generate too much attention until they get to a point where they will need replacement. 

In this post, We’ve covered all you need to know about successfully changing the chain. So, continue reading to learn how to replace the timing chain on your 4.0 Ford Explorer on your own.

Tools Required To Install Timing Chain in 4.0 Ford Explorer

There are some specific types of tools you will need. If you’re used to handling your own repairs, you’ll probably possess the majority of the equipment. These are some kinds:

  • Set of sockets
  • Wrench torque
  • Multifunctional wrenches
  • Screwdrivers.
  • Draining pan
  • Antifreeze.
  • Jack and jack posts.

How To Install Timing Chain in 4.0 Ford Explorer?

Ford 4.0 SOHC timing chain puller replacement procedure may not be as straightforward, and you might require to remove the complete engine apart initially for a proper setup.

Before you begin the installation procedure, you need to dismantle your harmonic stabilizer, front timing plate, and both valve plates once you have lifted your powerplant.

Complete the Ford 4.0 SOHC timing chain installation technique shown below to fit your new timing chains.

Step 1: Set the motor to upper dead center

This top dead center of the powerplant is created by aligning the groove and keys with the number 1 valve in front at 12 o’clock.

The very first thing is to confirm that the camshaft in your machine does not rotate in some other unexpected position. Grab a set of vice grips and place those upon that cam lobe.

Clamping down whenever either of the vice grips’ edges touches the piston cover’s connecting surface.

Step 2: Disconnect the hydraulic adjuster for the forward timing chain

Release and disconnect the timing belt hydraulic tensioner using a 27-millimeter wrench.

Disconnect the eight-millimeter studs adjacent to the timing chain mechanical tensioner, followed by the ten-millimeter studs.

Following that, you will need your tensioner and front guide uninstalled.

Step 3: Remove the chain and sprocket

Release the bolt after removing the e18 exterior torques. The old chain and sprocket will be uninstalled in this manner.

Remove the balance shaft adjuster. You may skip this step if you don’t even need a new balance shaft tensioner.

Insert a flat, narrow screwdriver across the gear and also the snout. Now, pound the screwdriver in to scrape upwards upon that keyway’s surface, and this will slip out.

Step 4: Take the chain out by spinning it

The following phase is to remove the link. Rotate the loop and draw it near yourself to do this. Replace the crankshaft latching mechanism again.

Make certain that the sprocket is installed in the right orientation. Replace all of the bolts.

Insert a new chain into the lubrication pan. Pull the sprocket up over the shaft, keeping the chamfer outward.

The chain should next be rolled onto the sprocket. Ensure that each of the chain’s connections is already in the proper position. Now, move the sprocket and chain across.

Step 5: Ensure that the crankshaft is exactly at 12 o’clock

It is critical to ensure that your camshaft remains at 12 o’clock. Mount the new jackshaft support and tighten all of the previously taken nuts.

Restore your jackshaft adjuster together with the formerly removed bolts.

Step 6: The jackshaft nuts must be torqued

For this phase, tighten back the jackshaft nuts to thirty-three-foot lbs and afterward add 90 degrees.

Before tightening the Campbell, attach the primary hydraulic chain adjuster. Throttle the Campbell to 63-foot pounds.

By implementing the Ford 4.0 SOHC timing chain installation process shown above, you may configure the Ford SOHC tensioner and Ford timing chain without the need for specialist equipment or the assistance of a professional.

When should a timing chain be replaced on a Ford Explorer?

Older vehicles may feature a timing chain, comparable to a motorbike chain, having a life span of roughly 60,000 miles. 

Timing belts composed of polyurethane and Kevlar are used in newer versions for extended life and endurance. 

They might go up to 100,000 miles, but it’s usually a good practice to replace them before that.

The collapse of the chain can result in serious injury to the engine’s cylinders, pistons, or other vital components. 

If the links are still under warranty, you may have the manufacturer repair them after around 10 years.

How Much Does It cost to replace a timing chain on a Ford Explorer?

Updating the chain is always less expensive than replacing the complete engine. The freshly replaced timing chain can cost you between $665 and $817 on average. 

Including the timing chain, you’ll need a few more components, which will set you back around $84 in total.

Most technicians charge between $581 and $732 for the work involved in installing a new timing chain inside your car.

As a result, you can realize that this repair may cost you more than 1000 bucks. However, there is absolutely no chance you can ignore this change or continue using the damaged timing chain.


As a result of the above, it’s possible to say that changing the timing chain in a 4.0 Ford Explorer is entirely possible for those with a bit of mechanical know-how—and it’s definitely worth doing. 

You will be rewarded in the long run with much better gas mileage and a little peace of mind.

Make sure you check the list of required tools and parts before you start this project. This can save you unpleasant surprises and help you avoid unnecessary expenses. 

And if you don’t feel confident enough to replace the timing chain on your own, it’s best to bring a reliable mechanic around.

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